Shifting patterns: Pacific barkcloth clothing

Exhibitions Fashion Historical textiles Selvedge shows and workshops

Pacific Islanders have been making and working with barkcloth for millennia (it was probably brought to the islands of the Pacific over 5000 years ago). Primarily made by women using inherited clan designs, barkcloth still plays an important role in social cohesion, historical narrative and artistic practice. The material is made from soaking and beating the inner bark of specific trees, usually the Paper Mulberry, and is highly valued as almost an extension of skin and clan identity. Hence the material often takes on ceremonial significance and frequently involves elaborate patterns and decoration rich in symbolism. Ranging from the 18th Century to the present day, this British Museum exhibition of barkcloth clothing includes many examples that are rarely displayed. Shifting patterns: Pacific barkcloth clothing 5 Feb-16 Aug, daily 10-5.30, Fridays 10-8.30   British Museum, Room 91, Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DG T: +44 (0)20 7323 8181

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  • Lin on

    I like you clothing

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